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Shout Out / Harry Potter

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  • There are a number of shout outs to Monty Python's Flying Circus:
    • "Mary Whitehouse has taken umbrage, no surprise there," said John Cleese. The last name of the Whitehouse caricature in Order of the Phoenix is "Umbridge".
    • The chocolate frogs are reminiscent of the chocolate-covered (real) frogs in the "Crunchy Frog" sketch. The same sketch also gave us Cockroach Clusters.
  • Voldemort's talking down to his minion (a traitor nicknamed Wormtail) is reminiscent of Saruman's abusive treatment of a henchman (a traitor nicknamed Wormtongue) in The Lord of the Rings. And for that matter the business with the locket in the last book that acts as a bad influence on the spirit of whoever's wearing it, seems reminiscent of Frodo wearing the One Ring.
    • Dementors vaguely resemble Nazgul.
    • Neville Longbottom might have been named after Longbottom Leaf.
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  • In Deathly Hallows Harry and Hermione notice the quotation "Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" on Dumbledore's mother's tombstone, as well as "The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death" on the Potters' grave.
  • The fact that the visitor's entrance to the Ministry is an old broken telephone booth with the phone that should not work being located in a garbage dump is one to the pilot of Doctor Who, wherein Ian and Barbara find an old, broken police telephone booth with a phone that should not work in the Foreman garbage dump.
  • The final pre-epilogue scene of Deathly Hallows, where the deceased Dumbledore's portrait comes to life to congratulate Harry on triumphing against Voldemort, is more than a little bit similar to the final scene of Return of the Jedi, where Obi-Wan and Yoda appear as Force Ghosts to congratulate Luke on triumphing against the Emperor.
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  • The "Wizengamot" is a wizarding high council and court; Harry faces trial in front of the full Wizengamot in Order of the Phoenix. This is a Shout Out to the "Witenagemot", a Real Life Anglo-Saxon council of nobility that advised kings of England up until the Norman Conquest.
  • Lupin says that the Wolfsbane Potion he has to take tastes horrible, but that adding sugar would make it ineffective, a reference to the Mary Poppins song "A Spoonful of Sugar". Apparently it doesn't help this particular medicine go down...
  • Rowling confirmed in an interview the job turnover rate of Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers was inspired by the turnover of Spinal Tap drummers.

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